UCI gives up on suspending College Republicans
The University of California, Irvine has fully revoked its suspension of the school’s College Republican chapter after facing criticism from liberals and conservatives alike for suppressing free speech.
Breitbart reports that the CRs were informed in a letter Tuesday that the school has restored the group’s full club privileges, though administrators had initially asked the chapter to comply with an appeals process as a condition of its reinstatement.
CR members, however, refused to enter any sort of appeals process, arguing that doing so would validate the administration’s initial suspension.
Now, Vice Chancellor Thomas Parham has converted the suspension into a mere warning, citing “media reports” of the club’s resiliency as part of his reasoning.
Initially, the CRs were facing a yearlong suspension after club president Ariana Rowlands suggested in a private meeting with administrators the possibility of bringing conservative pundit Milo Yiannopoulos back to campus.
Just four hours after the meeting, Rowlands and her peers were informed that they had lost their right to host events on campus because of an alleged failure to provide proof of insurance for an event more than a month prior—a citation that many CR members took to be an excuse to prevent Yiannopoulos’ return.
“Quite frankly, we were met with opposition right from the beginning with hosting Milo, so it does not come as a surprise that the university tried to niggle a loophole to get us pulled, after the fact,” CR social chair Carl Olson told Campus Reform. “I think the university wants to save face with progressives, and martyring our club seems like the easiest for them.”
The CRs even garnered the support of the schools “Anteaters for Bernie Sanders” club in an unprecedented bipartisan stance against college administrators.
“While we disagree with the College Republicans on a range of issues, the decision of the UC Irvine administration to suspend the campus club was a clear demonstration of the repeated mistreatment of all political organizations that take part in open discourse on campus,” the group announced in a statement. “We hereby firmly stand against this decision and are vehemently against the administration for their over-reaching bureaucracy.”
Now that the CRs have been fully reinstated, the school told Campus Reform that Milo “can come back any time.”
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @AGockowski